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Sang Choy is the Cantonese name for lettuce, and Bao is to wrap. You might find this dish familiar because it makes its way onto a lot of Chinese restaurant menus, usually as an entree / appetiser. In my family, it's a dish on its own and we sometimes substitute it with other "fillings" such as mushroom stew or anything that takes your fancy, really.
Peel and wash the required amount of lettuce leaves and shake off any excess water. Trim if necessary.
Add the soaked mushrooms and water chestnuts into food chopper (or food processor) and process till finely chopped. Set aside.
If using pine nuts, place pine nuts in a frying pan and toast using low heat. Toss them around frequently to avoid burning. Remove and set aside when they are golden brown.
Add cornflour into a bowl and add rice wine. Use a spoon and mix the cornflour till all dissolved. Then add soy sauce, oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, sugar and chicken stock and mix thoroughly. Set aside.
Heat wok till it's smoking hot, add peanut oil. Swirl it around the wok and when oil is hot, add the chopped garlic and fry till fragrant (approximately 5 seconds).
Add the mince. Stir fry till it's cooked, approximately 3 minutes.
Add mushroom and water chestnut mixture into wok and continue stir frying for another 2 minutes.
Give the sauce mixture in the bowl a quick stir to make sure that any settling of the cornflour is all mixed through again, pour the sauce into wok. Cook for 30 seconds.
Toss through pine nuts and spring onions. The whole mixture should look saucy yet thickened.
Serve in large bowl, garnish with coriander.
To make a wrap, spoon mince into lettuce cups, top with a teaspoon of more hoisin sauce if desired.
I like my guests to be "hands-on" with their food, which is the typical Chinese way of eating - communal and hands-on. Nothing is individually served. My guests always enjoy making their own wraps, and keep going back for more. There is no right or wrong way to make the wrap. Just make sure you get a mouthful of the mince and the lettuce together... and enjoy!
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